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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 16 December 2018

Emirati museum professionals are Louvre Abu Dhabi's 'greatest achievement'

Curating the next generation of Emirati museum professionals has been Louvre Abu Dhabi’s most important achievement, said the chairman of the Department of Culture and Tourism — Abu Dhabi.

Speaking ahead of the museum’s first birthday, which is on Sunday, Mohammed Al Mubarak said the landmark building has become a favoured destination among residents and visitors to the capital.

“Yet our greatest success, 10 years in the making, is the next generation of Emirati museum professionals who are trained to the highest standard in the cultural sector and are leaders in their field,” he said.

About half of the museum’s staff, at 47 per cent, are Emirati and make up some of the curators working on the collection, permanent galleries and in the education and mediation teams.

Emiratis and Indians are the top two nationalities to visit the museum with UAE citizens making the most repeat visits.

UAE residents make up a significant portion of the museum’s visitors, at 40 per cent, while the remaining 60 per cent come from overseas, namely the Middle East, Europe and Asia, with France, Germany, China, UK, the United States, India and the GCC.

Indian nationals are the top visitors to the museum overall, including tourists and UAE residents.

“Louvre Abu Dhabi’s vision is to celebrate cross-cultural connections that transcend geographies and civilisations, to see humanity in a new light,” said Mr Al Mubarak.

“The diversity of Louvre Abu Dhabi’s audiences not only reflects Abu Dhabi’s multicultural society, but also illustrates how its ambition and universal narrative, which aim to create bridges between cultures and nurture dialogue between communities, appeal to many, from seasoned art enthusiasts to younger audiences and families.”

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Read more:

One million people visited Louvre Abu Dhabi in its first year: we look at what's in store for the next 10 years

Louvre Abu Dhabi's first birthday: how the museum found its home

Inside Louvre Abu Dhabi's new 'Roads of Arabia' exhibition

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Since opening, the museum has hosted more than 1,000 school trips and 5,000 guided tours, workshops and masterclasses. In addition, it has hosted more than 115 special events, including talks, film screenings and concerts, with British pop star Dua Lipa to celebrate the museum’s first anniversary on Sunday night.

“On one hand, we have access to some of the most incredible collections and benefit from collaborating with some of the world’s most qualified museum experts,” said Manuel Rabate, director of Louvre Abu Dhabi.

“On the other, being a young museum in this region empowers us to be experimental and encourages us to be agile to appeal to our incredibly diverse audiences. Before the opening, we were often asked if there was an appetite for museums in Abu Dhabi and the amazing response we’ve had in our first year is proving that there is.”